Sunday, 31 July 2016

Stein.



I don't know how many Rick Stein books I have; maybe 10.

The above two are my latest additions. Food from Spain, and from the Eastern Med'.

More than most other food writers, Stein has a genuine understanding of the social and geographical significance of both his ingredients and their usage. He loves the utter simple just as much as the multi-starred posh.

In the introduction to his 'Venice to Istanbul' he talks of the simplicity (and perfection) of a Greek salad. One is immediately reminded of those delightful beach-side island Tavernas, of Retsina and Domestica, of warm nights under the stars that one prayed would never end.

I regret that I never attempted to learn Greek; I would have loved to own a small fisherman's cottage on some tiny Cycladean island. Zorba would have danced for me, some smiling elderly grandmother would have cooked for me, and my table would have been home to fishermen farmers and wine makers (as well as Stein himself).


Recipe books, especially Stein's, are as much travelogues as descriptions of foods. A pot of Hummus from Waitrose can never invoke the memories that the above photo can muster in an instant. Stein is my kind of cook, and my kind of tourist. 

He seems to get it right every time.




36 comments:

  1. I don't have any of his books - must look out for them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The TV shows are well worth watching too.

      Delete
  2. Not my Kind of personality. Too much publicity too rich too selfish but may be a good cook. There are a lot other as wonderful cooking book as those he published.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can't imagine you liking much in life.

      Delete
    2. I like à lot of things why do you always need people to agree with you ? Quite strange

      Delete
    3. It's not a question of agreeing with me, but you do seem very negative about most things. Why would you wish to dislike someone because he is successful and 'rich'? As for him being selfish, I think of him as being totally the opposite.

      Delete
  3. Didn't know he published books, but I do enjoy his TV shows.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I occasionally watch his TV series simply as entertainment; there's not a lot of other TV that I like too much.

      Delete
  4. This is the first time I've seen his name; I'll have to see if he can be found on youtube and Amazon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He is both very entertaining and instructive. His Indian TV series is wonderful.

      Delete
    2. I have to thank you for introducing me to Mr. Stein; it's been a very pleasant hour (and more) exploring his vids on youtube.

      Delete
  5. I like his tv programmes because they are cookery with travel and he is quite entertaining. I haven't got any of his books though. But I am not big in cookery books.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I actually READ cookery books, and RS's are very entertaining.

      Delete
    2. The only cookery book I ever read was Floyd on France and I still love that book. He was very entertaining too on his food 'travel' programmes.

      Delete
    3. Recipes are short stories always with a happy ending.
      Mia is right there are lots to choose from according to taste!

      Delete
  6. I watched some of his tv programs after you wrote about him and liked it very much,i also have some Greek cookbooks that i bought in Greece many years ago,they are wonderful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love Greek food, it's very simple, very honest, and usually very good quality.

      Delete
  7. Never heard of him but shall look out for his books now. Thanks Cro! And I doubt your life could be any more idyllic even if you did live on a Greek isle. The south of France sounds just as lovely to me!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This would remain my main residence; the Greek pad would be for wild weekends.

      Delete
  8. If we ever won enough money we'd hire one of those canal boats and 'do' the Canal du Midi both ways. Just us and the crew no others.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That would make a great holiday, and you could pop in here for lunch!

      Delete
    2. Thanks. We live closer to you now than the Canal gets so we will be round next Sunday!!!

      Delete
  9. I like Rick Stein and his travelogue TV shows. I particularly remember the Canal du Midi one, and like Potty, would love to be wined and dined while cruising down the canal.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When he was down in the Herault he had lunch with my friend, the watercolour painter Simon Fletcher (one of the later episodes). Simon will be here in a couple of weeks. Small world.

      Delete
  10. Its never too late Cro, for learning Greek and wild weekends! x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sadly, I think it's too late for both.

      Delete
  11. I really enjoyed his programme on Europe. He was spot on about Greece unlike most other travelogues. He is in Thessaloniki at the moment making a new series on Greece. You dont find retsina any more, except in a glass bottle in the supermarket. Rough stuff but the more you drink the better it gets!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I loved it; it seemed to suit both Greece's rustic country cuisine, and the very simple fish dishes.

      Delete
  12. Reading your two most recent posts has made me really hungry, even though I've just finished breakfast. Wanderlust has also been summoned!

    Best wishes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Frances, at this time of year my thoughts are almost 100% to do with food and its preservation.

      Delete
  13. His Padstow pub is great. Chalky was an entertainer in himself!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We all loved Chalky. Feisty little chap.

      Delete
  14. Out of all of the tv cooks i like him the best
    Ps have you heard from weaver?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, I believe she was quite unwell.

      Delete
  15. I loved the food and wine of Greece when I was there, but when I returned home and went to a Greek restaurant (1st and 2nd generation), it was not as good. I think the beauty of Greece made everything taste better.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I used to go to a Greek restaurant in Brighton that was great fun. But you're right, the atmosphere in Greece makes all the difference.

      Delete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...